Did you know that there is a robot that was developed with the capability of climbing stairs better than a human can?
Typically, bipedal robotic creations are costly and have the tendency to walk around like a newborn calf by tipping over–well, almost in any case! However, even with that being said, these bipeds, as they are called, are aimed at going everywhere where we as humans can go! And what is the bain of our lives? Climbing stairs, of course!
Stairs vs. Bipeds
The invention of stairs has proven to be a challenge for robots of varying kinds. When it comes to bipedal robots, this has been no different, and then after the biped has a fall, it is up to one of the engineers to put it together again and dust them off for the next attempt.
Although one might be forgiven in thinking that developers only have to improve the sensors and computing model in order to achieve this, nothing is further from the truth! Cassie has been given the task of approaching ascending and descending from stairs, all without this technology!
What is So Amazing About Cassie?
What is interesting about Cassie is that she is completely blind! This implies that she has no sense of what to expect as she is not being given information about the stairs. She is able to navigate the stairs by means of the type of contact she feels when touching the stairs. This is called proprioceptive feedback.
Be it that she stumbles, bumps her toe, or looks like she might fall over–she doesn’t and manages to reach her destination in fashion! Her developers have thrown her in the deep end by exposing her to real-life scenarios and circumstances. It just goes to show, instead of reinventing the wheel, use what is already there and make it better!
The researchers have trained Cassie to work around the parameters of the basic fundamentals of an eight stair building. Even though she has been trained in a different manner by combining a series of imperfect scenarios, this is working greatly to her advantage!